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I purchased a used 2007LT for $13500, with 13,800 miles on it, last April after I totaled my 06 VTX1300R, VTX ran flawlessly until crash. I purchased the LT because I do several long distance trips each year and a long distance touring bike seemed to be the way to go. I purchased the BMW which I hadn’t considered to be in my price range but this bike was several thousand less than a comparably equipped Goldwing. My main concern was the lack of Service support here in Oklahoma City, every BMW rider I talk to says the local dealership is dishonest and to steer clear of them; they were more animate in their description. The reputation of BMW lasting a long time with little or no problems made me go ahead with the purchase. I am now at 25500 miles and have changed the oil myself using BMW oil filter and Mobil 1 oil. I haven’t contacted a mechanic yet, but from what I am reading on this forum I am looking at a clutch replacement. Symptom: When I get on the throttle and am in I would say 4th or 5th the rmp gage will go up but the bike is slow to catch up with what the rmp gage shows. It also seems the clutch lever doesn’t have as much resistance as usual. Sorry if not a good description, I’m not really mechanically inclined. So I have had the bike less than a year and possibly looking at a $2000 repair bill and from what I am reading, no guarantee that I won’t have the same problem in a few months. It will have to be fixed whether I trade it in, sell it or keep it. I’m more that a little disgusted at the moment.

Has BMW really gone as far down hill as this forum has made it sound?
 

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I find it hard to believe that you are choosing to blame BMW and call your bike a lemon for clutch wear. Sorry, that's just absurd. Let's look at what we have here -
  • You purchased a used bike with no indication or knowledge of how the previous owner treated or maintained it.
  • You rode it over 12,000 miles with no issues
  • You've heard the local dealer is bad through some anecdotal information
  • You've read some things on an Internet forum that elude to the bike having some issue (guess what, all motorcycle forums say this about all makes and models)
  • You're complaining about a part wearing out that is designed to wear out, on all vehicles, not just BMW motorcycles.
So to answer your final question - No, it has not.

To address the issue you seem to be having - Yes, it does sound like your clutch is starting to slip. It could be a wear problem or a clutch plate contamination problem.

Is 25,000 miles a little early for this to happen? Possibly, but I know of cases where clutches have been replaced as early as 9000 miles (but that guy rode with the clutch lever pulled in a little ALL THE TIME in case he got into a panic stop situation). I would say 35 - 65,000 is more the norm (did the clutch at 36 and 39,000 on 2 of my LTs). But again, without knowing how the previous owner rode the bike, and not knowing how you ride the bike, it's impossible to say this is wearing out earlier than expected.

As for the repair cost, I don't think I paid that much for a clutch replacement on my LTs in California where labor rates are much higher than Oklahoma. Who provided you with that quote? If you have the work done at a BMW dealership the repair work is warrantied for some time (either 90 days or 1 year) depending on the type of repair.

As for it happening again in a few months, I think you're more likely to get struck by lightning. But not knowing how you ride and how you treat a clutch, I could be wrong. I don't know of any cases where that has happened, though (the lightning or the failed clutch within weeks after a replaced clutch).

Are BMWs somewhat expensive to maintain? Yes they can be, but that's as well known as their long term reliability (which you mention so I'm guessing you heard about repair costs, too).

Have all my BMWs been perfect? Far from it, but I come to the game with the expectation they are machines with moving parts, and anything with moving parts will have failures. That's part of the cost of playing the game in my book, plain and simple.

My recommendation - Get a documented quote from a dealer and ask about how long they warranty that type of repair. While in there have them replace the rear main seal on the engine and the input shaft seal on the tranny, just as precautionary measures (it could be one of these is weeping and the oil has contaminated the clutch causing your slippage, happened to one of my GSs). Get it fixed and go ride the bike and enjoy it. You've done so for 12,000 miles, I see no reason why that needs to change for several 10s of thousands more.
 

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I totally agree with david
The clutch must have been abused,,, my experience has been 145,000 ks on 1999 Lt
86,000k on 02 Lt 125,000 ks on 1150 rt 2001 all with no work on the clutch
Once you can ride properly you only need it to go down gears and starting off.
Have it fixed and then share the love
Look around you dont see many long distance jap bikes
 

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Old Slow Guy in A Fast Car
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On a 2007 with 25500 miles you MAY still have a warranty on the bike. If you have not even talked to the local BMW dealer how do you know what they are like. NO Dealer can please everyone & you may have just found the folks that they DID NOT please. I would go talk to the Dealer about the Warranty & see if they are willing to work with you.

BTW I have a 2000 LT I bought used 5 1/2 years ago with 12,000 miles & it now has 68K flawless miles. It can set for 3 or 4 months due to my work but I would & have just jumped on it and rode across the country with out worrying about the bike failing.
 

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taehapdo said:
The reputation of BMW lasting a long time with little or no problems made me go ahead with the purchase.
Well that's your problem right there. :bmw:
 

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I'm wondering if there's a point to your post, are you asking for help? if so isn't that a bit of the wrong way to go about it.

The majority here love their bikes, a majority here find something to piss and moan about that's nothing new nor is it an indication of how utterly horrible the machine or bmw is. I have to ask how many bikes have you seen still on the road with 100K on them why didn't you take that into account as well.

If you don't have a dealer handy or you can't afford the cost to have someone else take care of your problem then I would suggest buying some metric tools and a Clymer's manual and get started replacing the clutch....it looks far more imposing then it really is after all its just a motorcycle it doesn't require a rocket scientist to figure it out.

Like the others have suggested check on the warranty status. And maybe review your own handling of the clutch you put 12k on that clutch with no apparent issues maybe you have a leaking seal maybe not just a thought.
 

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A lemon? I doubt it.

I have an '03 LT with 103,000 miles and still with the original clutch.

Good luck with your fix and then RIDE!

Just my .02 cents worth.
Vern :bmw:
 

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Is there someone who can provide a "clutch" lesson?

I drove some 200K miles on Honda cars with clutches and only went thru two clutches that I can recall.

I am curious as to if there is a lesson on proper usage of the clutch?

I did a few searches and came up with nothing usefull.

Maybe a video?

I would hate to burn out my clutch with improper usage.
 

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Ideally, your clutch will only slip when starting out from a stop in first gear. Once you are moving, matching the gear and the engine RPMs minimizes the clutch slippage. The bottom line is that the less you slip the clutch the longer it should last. Also, if you happen to be one of those people who likes to ride with your fingers on the clutch lever you need to break that habit. Moving the lever even just slightly covers the return port in the master cylinder and will cause pressure to build in the line. I try not to apply hard throttle until my fingers are off the clutch lever completely.

It does sound to me like the OP has blown a slave cylinder or has some other type of contamination. I have found that the best way to deal with repairs is to know what you want and get your written estimate in advance. I.E. what will it cost me AT THE MOST for input/output seals, pressure plate, clutch plate, and a slave cylinder? Yes, a clutch job is very expensive. Two grand is not unusual at a dealer for that service, but the parts are about four to six hundred dollars.
 

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Taehapdo,

That sucks about your clutch. I got an 05 a year ago from a local dealer. Prior to selling the bike the dealer did a work up on it and found the clutch slipping and ended up replacing the main seal. Good for me, not for the guy selling it on commision. Fast forward to the end of the year and about 10K miles later, the final drive started to leak. Figured I was a victim of the dreaded final drive issues. A local independant mechanic checked it out and it was just the seals, everything else was fine. Realized I had gotten excited about nothing. Was not that much to fix.

Rambling point being, without knowing the history of the bike etc, you can't really tell what its been through. Maybe the previous owner road two up overloaded a lot with a trailer. The good thing is its still winter and you have down time to get it fixed. If you like working on things, get a book, some tools and go for it. Maybe check in the regional forum here and see if there is anyone in your area that has done a clutch and is willing to help out. I have found that many BMW owners are very quick to offer a hand to the newer owner to help out with a fix. The bike is really a great bike and once the clutch is fixed, you will find it eats the miles up in comfort. Good luck
 

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deanwoolsey said:
Ideally, your clutch will only slip when starting out from a stop in first gear. Once you are moving, matching the gear and the engine RPMs minimizes the clutch slippage. The bottom line is that the less you slip the clutch the longer it should last. Also, if you happen to be one of those people who likes to ride with your fingers on the clutch lever you need to break that habit. Moving the lever even just slightly covers the return port in the master cylinder and will cause pressure to build in the line. I try not to apply hard throttle until my fingers are off the clutch lever completely.
I got ya.

1. NO COVER the clutch or brake!
2. Match RPM when shifting.
3. Clutch should only "slip" when starting out.

My question is for when starting out, what is the MAX amount of slippage?

One thing I just read on another site was to "pop" the clutch quickly so that you have NO slipping.
 

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Kra961 said:
I'm wondering if there's a point to your post, are you asking for help? if so isn't that a bit of the wrong way to go about it.
I totally understand how your heart can sink when you bought an expensive machine and run into what can be an expensive problem.
As stated above you can ask for help, get a Clymer manual, read up on the forum, try and locate a cutout socket (needed to remove the final drive and swing arm), and take an inventory of the tools you have.
Then offer coffee and donuts to the local members of this forum to come help you. There is much you can do on your own, such taking off all the Tupperware, before calling in the cavalry.
Read up, the read up some more, and start taking the bike apart, documenting your work with digital photographs. These will help during reassembly, but also allow you to post when you run into unknown territory and ask for help.
You will find that it is more fun to wrench with some new-found friends, you will learn a great deal about your bike, and you'll save tons on labor!
 

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Ahh so sorry,... your first BMW and the clutch is wearing out at 25k
yup,.. must be a lemon, get rid of that p.o.s
never buy anything made by that brand again,
they've deteriorated :crybaby:

The clutch wearing out on a used vehicle....
is simply unheard of... must be the bike's fault!

You can't be serious?

96% :) of the people on this forum love their bikes,
and would do anything they could to help you
Why would you want to start out whining and flinging poo?
 

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We need to rename this thread to something like:
Is there where I come for sympathy?
or
Would someone hold my hand and tell me that everything is going to be alright?

Any other thoughts?

:histerica :rotf: :wave
 

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I agree with SilverBuffalo - better just get rid of it....I have 2 Ben Franklins I will give you for it :)
Get a boat and then complain about costs... :histerica :wave
 

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A clutch slipping makes it a lemon? Get it fixed and you'll have lemonade. Mine went at 60K due to contamination, waited until winter to get lower labor rates and had it fixed. Should I sell now that its working fine?
 

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mwnahas said:
Should I sell now that its working fine?
Probably better, you've only got a few months! :(
 

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OK, I can't believe some of these posts....:rotf:

I live in OKC too so I can give you the info...
I personally don't care for the OKC dealer.. I'm told by MANY others that they do outstanding work and I've never heard of anyone having a "serious" issue with them...My issue is definately not serious..

My experience is that they have been a little "snooty" to me, Possibly because I don't get my work done there, I do it myself. And on top of that, I've never bought a bike from them so they really don't give much of a shit about my little tiny bit of business... I've tried to buy a little part or two along the way but they always seem to charge me retail plus...And it always has to be ordered and paid for in advance..
I'm sure you'd get treated better if you spent some serious money there.. I haven't... JM2C YMMV.

Now on to your clutch..

Unfortunately this is one of the weak links in the BMWLT.. The slave cylinder or one of the engine or transmission seals fails and starts leaking oil into the clutch housing.. The clutch becomes contaminated with oil and starts to show the symptoms you've described...Unless It's been drag racing, I guarantee your clutch is not worn out...But it is ruined just the same..

It has happened to a LOT of folks... And it's not happened to a LOT of folks...
So, Decide if you like the bike or not...
If you like the bike.. Get the clutch replaced and all the appropriate seals..Replace all the seals...And the slave cylinder even if it's not leaking... Why? Because.....
This work will have a two year warranty if you get it done by a dealer..BMW of Bentonville, Ar I'm told is a great dealership..
Now you know what you have and can maintain the bike properly and you'll be fine..

If you don't like the bike.. Do what you need to do... All bikes have an issue or two.. You bought a BMW, //Humorous rant on: A big extension of your penis !:histerica And it also implies, I've got a Big Muther of a Wallet... It's an expensive bike to buy and repair, Just like their cars...You've either got to Do It Yourself or have some disposable income to own one of these.. Just the way it is......It's not a Jap bike it's a German bike and it's in a different league.... Nothing about it is or will ever be Cheap !!!!! ( And by that I mean inexpensive !!) Except we, the few, the,the,the,the, the.......... Owners...:D //Humorous rant off:::::

Now I think you've got enough information to make a good decision. The LT is an awesome bike. It's a Thoroughbred Racehorse, But like a racehorse it does have it's quirks.. You've just seen one of them.. There is another....Luke....

Pm me if you have any questions...

BMW's factory warranty is 3 years or 36,000 miles from the original date of sale..
It's possible your bike could still be under warranty.....Or not..It's also possible that even though it's just out of warranty timewise, BMW would warranty it because of the mileage..

Talk to the dealer and try to be nicer than I apparently am...:wave

Good Luck

John
 

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DavidTaylor said:
I find it hard to believe that you are choosing to blame BMW and call your bike a lemon for clutch wear. Sorry, that's just absurd. Let's look at what we have here -
  • You purchased a used bike with no indication or knowledge of how the previous owner treated or maintained it.
  • You rode it over 12,000 miles with no issues
  • You've heard the local dealer is bad through some anecdotal information
  • You've read some things on an Internet forum that elude to the bike having some issue (guess what, all motorcycle forums say this about all makes and models)
  • You're complaining about a part wearing out that is designed to wear out, on all vehicles, not just BMW motorcycles.
So to answer your final question - No, it has not.

To address the issue you seem to be having - Yes, it does sound like your clutch is starting to slip. It could be a wear problem or a clutch plate contamination problem.

Is 25,000 miles a little early for this to happen? Possibly, but I know of cases where clutches have been replaced as early as 9000 miles (but that guy rode with the clutch lever pulled in a little ALL THE TIME in case he got into a panic stop situation). I would say 35 - 65,000 is more the norm (did the clutch at 36 and 39,000 on 2 of my LTs). But again, without knowing how the previous owner rode the bike, and not knowing how you ride the bike, it's impossible to say this is wearing out earlier than expected.

As for the repair cost, I don't think I paid that much for a clutch replacement on my LTs in California where labor rates are much higher than Oklahoma. Who provided you with that quote? If you have the work done at a BMW dealership the repair work is warrantied for some time (either 90 days or 1 year) depending on the type of repair.

As for it happening again in a few months, I think you're more likely to get struck by lightning. But not knowing how you ride and how you treat a clutch, I could be wrong. I don't know of any cases where that has happened, though (the lightning or the failed clutch within weeks after a replaced clutch).

Are BMWs somewhat expensive to maintain? Yes they can be, but that's as well known as their long term reliability (which you mention so I'm guessing you heard about repair costs, too).

Have all my BMWs been perfect? Far from it, but I come to the game with the expectation they are machines with moving parts, and anything with moving parts will have failures. That's part of the cost of playing the game in my book, plain and simple.

My recommendation - Get a documented quote from a dealer and ask about how long they warranty that type of repair. While in there have them replace the rear main seal on the engine and the input shaft seal on the tranny, just as precautionary measures (it could be one of these is weeping and the oil has contaminated the clutch causing your slippage, happened to one of my GSs). Get it fixed and go ride the bike and enjoy it. You've done so for 12,000 miles, I see no reason why that needs to change for several 10s of thousands more.

I agree as well. Also while you have heard bad things about Oklahoma City BMW dealer, I have heard good things about them, so perhaps you might take the bike in and give them a shot, maybe you will have a better experience. I am on my second LT and did not hesitate to buy a second one. I hope you get the problems sorted out and you get to enjoy this wonderful machine.
 
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